Franziska

Ernst Weiss
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Translated by Anthea Bell

Paperback

272 pp

Published 28/03/2008

ISBN 9781901285789

A tragic story of love, obsession and the power of music

Following the death of her mother, Franziska turns away from love and follows a grimly determined path to achieve a career as a concert pianist. Her determination takes her from her humble home in a small Czech town to an unconventional life in Prague, and eventually draws to a destructive climax in pre-war Berlin. Franziska is a fascinating exploration of character, an alluring treatment of the power of music and of a woman's obsession. Ernst Weiss second novel was published in 1914 and was highly regarded by Franz Kafka, with whom Weiss was in regular contact.

Ernst Weiss was born in 1884 in Brünn (now Brno) in Bohemia. He worked as a doctor and served in World War I. In 1938 Weiss emigrated to France. He committed suicide in 1940, the day the German troops entered Paris. Weiss novels show expressionistic and surrealist tendencies, often expressing violent perverted sexual impulses and marked by deep pessimism, owing something to Weiss' friend Franz Kafka.

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